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Kenyon Review Newsletter August 2011

Report on Gender Inequality in Publishing:
How KR Stacks Up

Pie ChartKR Editor David Lynn writes:

Earlier this year VIDA: Women in Literary Arts published an interesting study on gender identity and published writers, featuring statistics regarding literary publications such as The Atlantic, The New York Review of Books, Harpers, and many others. It made quite a splash—as VIDA pointed out, “numbers don’t lie,” and most of these magazines have been publishing male authors to a significantly skewed degree. Neither The Kenyon Review nor KROnline were included in the original article, however, and we were curious. What follows here is a study and short article by one of the remarkable KR Associates, Colleen Damerell. I am grateful for all her work. I think you’ll find it interesting.

Click here to read the article and see the stats.

Why We Chose It

Why We Chose It

On Katy Didden’s “The Soldier on Routine”

By G.C. Waldrep, Editor at Large

Before any editor can answer “why I chose it” in any meaningful way, he or she must first step back and answer “Why edit, to start with?” I edit in part because I want to keep acquainted with the living, breathing life of the art. I edit in part because my inner social scientist likes to have a sense of the broad parameters of the art, this “creative writing,” at any given moment. I edit because once upon a time I was someone (sans MFA, living in an obscure corner of the rural South) whose early poems were picked up by editors out of the slush: there is an ethical compact here, a passionate desire to return that early favor. Finally, I edit because it’s something I can do in those interstices of free time that don’t offer themselves up to more focused exploits: the 18 minutes between student appointments, the 49 minutes between the last task and my lunch date. This may sound cold. Sometimes it is.

Continue reading to learn why KR selected Katy Didden’s poem for Summer 2011 issue of The Kenyon Review.

On the Hunt for the Best Front-to-Back Issue
of The Kenyon Review, Ever

The Kenyon Review, Autumn 1960The bids are in for the best single front-to-back issue of the old series, and the competition is heated! Kudos to Grant Johnson, Kate Kremer and Hannah Withers for scouring the stacks of back run issues, sizing up the 60s, 50s, and 40s, respectively, and choosing what they identified as the best issue of each decade. Click on the link below to find quotes and the tables of contents for each issue. Think it over, and be sure to visit our Facebook page and vote! Grant, Kate and Hannah will continue the quest with the three decades of the new series next, and we’ll square off old versus new in a showdown of literary greatness in the coming months.

Click here to see the nominees and then vote for your favorite on Facebook!

“Wrong to assume . . . ”: KR’s Young Writers Program Challenges Expectations

Upon moving in for the Kenyon Review Young Writers program, you’ll find that you and your roommate have many things in common. You’ll share a facility with words, a knack for scribbling in the margins of things, a sense that you have exciting work to do, that here you can do it. You’ll find something else too: that there’s much you and your roommate don’t have in common. You’ll come from different states, different countries. You’ll speak with regional accents that make English sound like a foreign language. Your roommate’s parents, unlike your parents, will not be librarians or lawyers or business owners. To make a long story short, you and your roommate will be very different people. And yes, you will likely be of a different race. This is intentional and crucial. This is a big part of the experience you are about to have. Be open. It counts.

Click here to learn more about this summer’s Young Writers Workshop.

Spring 2011CLMP Lit Mag Adoption Program

Looking for a literary magazine to use in your Creative Writing course? Why not consider using The Kenyon Review through the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP) Lit Mag Adoption Program?

Learn more about the Lit Mag Adoption program here.

From the KR Archive

Spring 2001In Spring 2001, KR produced a special issue in partnership with Stand (U.K.) and the Nobel Museum in Stockholm to celebrate the centenary of the Nobel Prize. Among the treasures offered in that issue were new poems by Seamus Heaney, Czeslaw Milosz, and Wislawa Szymborska, new translations of stunning, deathbed poems of the Bengali laureate Rabindranath Tagore, as well as a discussion of poetic form by Joseph Brodsky and Derek Walcott, and a little-known story by Patrick White. Taken together, these pieces formed a collective meditation on the power of creativity to cross borders and change minds. Perhaps no poet crossed as many borders—poetic, political, and geographical—as Pablo Neruda, whose early poems from Residencia en la Tierra were reprinted in this special issue in new translations by Lewis Hyde.

The Kenyon Review, Spring 2001, Vol. XXIII, No. 2.

The Widower’s Tango

     Oh Maligna, now you’ve found the letter, now you’ve cried with rage,
and you’ve insulted the memory of my mother,
calling her a rotten bitch and the mother of dogs,
now you’ve drunk the afternoon tea alone, lonely,
staring at my old shoes, empty forever,
and now you can’t recall my illnesses, my night dreams, my meals,
without cursing me out loud as if I were still there
complaining about the tropics, about the corringhis coolies,
about the poison fevers that hurt me so much
and about the dreadful Englishmen, whom I still hate.

Click here to finish reading this poem.

From KRO

The Poet is the Priest of the Invisible

     —Wallace Stevens

Dark-eyed, mysterious Meadowhawk,
the poet is the rabbi of the diaphanous,

scribe of the sheer, the barely-there
brief, pungi of the five o’clock shadow,

hint of rosewood and ghost. The poet
preaches a thin-barked willow sermon;

what she labors over is always prone
to sunscald, to scrutiny, its veins

visible through the skin. Gossamer
goddess, translucent muse, she lofts

a gauzy lug wrench toward the shadowy
freeway, where the alphabet—each of its

limpid clauses, each hyaline verb—
has once again broken down, needs a lift.

Click here to read another poem by Martha Silano.

KROnline is the online complement of The Kenyon Review. New fiction, essays, poetry, and reviews are published on a biweekly basis. Check back often to read some of the most cutting edge material you’ll find anywhere on the web. Click here to see our latest offering.

From the KR BlogHilary Plum




A machine or a book

July 21, 2011 —
Hilary Plum

This week as I blog for the Kenyon Review, I am in fact at Kenyon College, visiting during the Kenyon Review Young Writers’ Workshop—getting as an outsider to witness and share in the workshop’s energy and exuberance, and also slipping off to wander the campus and surrounding farmlands and swimming holes on my own. This means such activities as: stopping by the Yeats archives in the Greenslade Special Collections. And: listening in as the workshop’s instructors discuss a wealth of writing prompts, or Prompts, as I’ve come after so much discussion to hear the word in my head.

Click here to finish reading this blog post.

The KR Family Tree

Think of this section as a bulletin from KR in which we brag about the accomplishments of the extended KR family and leave out the gall-bladder surgeries. Click on any of the names below for recent author news:

Marcia Aldrich Gabriel Fried Rose McLarney
David Bottoms Marilyn Hacker Matthew Olzmann
Annah Browning Cynthia Haven Doug Ramspeck
Nickolas Butler Jane Hirshfield Omar Sabbagh
Dan Chelotti Laura Kasischke Ira Sadoff
Kelly Cherry John Kinsella Martha Silano
Sharon Dolin Judy Labensohn Raisa Tolchinsky
Jennifer duBois Harriet Levin Theodore Wheeler
Kelly Fordon Amit Majmudar Alexander Yates


Contents August 2011
Gender Divide?
Why We Chose It
Best Issue Ever
Young Writers
KR in Classrooms
From the Archives
From KROnline
From the Blog
KR Family Tree





Poets Forum





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The Summer Issue,
On Newsstands Now!
Summer 2011
Ron Carlson,
Alice Fulton,
Rodney Jones,
& more





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